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Carl Emmermann
Carl Emmermann
Born (1915-03-06)6 March 1915
Died 25 March 1990(1990-03-25) (aged 75)
Place of birth Hamburg
Place of death Celle
Allegiance Nazi Germany Nazi Germany
Service/branch  Kriegsmarine
Years of service 1934 – 1945
Rank Korvettenkapitän
Unit SSS Gorch Fock
light cruiser Karlsruhe
6th U-boat Flotilla
10th U-boat Flotilla
Commands held U-172, November 5, 1941 – October 31, 1943
U-3037, March 3, 1945 – April 22, 1945
Battles/wars Battle of the Atlantic (1939-1945)
Awards Iron Cross First Class
U-boat War Badge with Diamonds
U-boat Front Clasp
Knight's Cross with Oak Leaves
Other work Engineer

Lieutenant Commander Carl Emmermann (6 March 1915 – 25 March 1990) was a German U-boat commander during World War II. In his time as commander, he succeeded in sinking 27 ships for a total tonnage of 152,080 gross register tons (GRT).

Emmermann began his naval career in 1934. For some years he was training officer on the Naval Academy Mürwik, where future officers got their training.

In 1939 Emmermann joined the U-boat force and in November 1940 became the first Watch officer on U-A under the command of Hans Eckermann. On her first patrol U-A only damaged the British steamer SS Empire Attendant.

In November 1941 Emmermann took over his own boat, U-172. He completed five patrols with this boat, in the Caribbean Sea, with the wolf pack Eisbär in South African waters, and in the North and South Atlantic.

His greatest success was the sinking of the British liner-troopship SS Orcades. His fifth patrol with U-172 was dramatic, in that the boat brought back half the crew of U-604 which had been so heavily damaged during two air attacks that she had to be scuttled. After that patrol Emmermann became the commander of the 6th U-boat Flotilla in November 1943.

In August 1944 Emmermann became the chief of the Erprobungsgruppe Typ XXIII. There in late 1944 he wrote the battle instructions for the new Type XXIII U-boat.

In March 1945 he was commander of U-3037 for one month, and in the last month of the war he commanded the 31st U-boat Flotilla in Hamburg. Along with some other U-boat men he took part in infantry duty around Hamburg as commander of Marine-Battalion Emmermann.

Emmermann survived the war and later returned to Germany, studied engineering and prospered in business.

Summary of career

Ships attacked

As commander of U-172, Emmermann is credited with the sinking of 26 merchant ships totaling 152,080 gross register tons (GRT).

Date Ship Nationality Tonnage Fate[1]
27 May 1942 Athelknight  United Kingdom 8,490 Sunk
3 June 1942 City of Alma  United States 5,446 Sunk
5 June 1942 Delfina  United States 3,480 Sunk
8 June 1942 Sicilien  United States 1,654 Sunk
14 June 1942 Lebore  United States 8,289 Sunk
15 June 1942 Bennestvet  Norway 2,438 Sunk
18 June 1942 Motorex  United Kingdom 1,958 Sunk
23 June 1942 Resolute *  Colombia 35 Sunk
9 July 1942 Santa Rita  United States 8,379 Sunk
7 October 1942 Chicksaw City  United States 6,196 Sunk
7 October 1942 Firethorn  Panama 4,700 Sunk
8 October 1942 Orcades  United Kingdom 23,456 Sunk
31 October 1942 Aldington Court  United Kingdom 4,891 Sunk
2 November 1942 Llandilo  United Kingdom 4,996 Sunk
23 November 1942 Benlomond  United Kingdom 6,630 Sunk
28 November 1942 Alaskan  United States 5,364 Sunk
4 March 1943 City of Pretoria  United Kingdom 6,049 Sunk
13 March 1943 Thorstrand  Norway 3,041 Sunk
13 March 1943 Keystone  United States 5,565 Sunk
16 March 1943 Benjamin Harrison  United States 7,191 Sunk
29 March 1943 Moanda  Belgium 4,621 Sunk
28 June 1943 Vernon City  United Kingdom 4,748 Sunk
12 July 1943 African Star  United States 6,507 Sunk
15 July 1943 Harmonic  United Kingdom 4,558 Sunk
24 July 1943 Fort Chilcotin  United Kingdom 7,133 Sunk
* Sailing ship



  1. "U-172". Retrieved 5 November 2013. 
  2. Busch and Röll 2003, p. 276.
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 3.3 3.4 3.5 Busch and Röll 2003, p. 277.
  4. 4.0 4.1 Scherzer 2007, p. 294.
  • Busch, Hans-Joachim; Röll (2003) (in German). Der U-Boot-Krieg 1939–1945 — Die Ritterkreuzträger der U-Boot-Waffe von September 1939 bis Mai 1945 [The U-Boat War 1939–1945 — The Knight's Cross Bearers of the U-Boat Force from September 1939 to May 1945]. Hamburg, Berlin, Bonn Germany: Verlag E.S. Mittler & Sohn. ISBN 978-3-8132-0515-2. 
  • Fellgiebel, Walther-Peer (2000) (in German). Die Träger des Ritterkreuzes des Eisernen Kreuzes 1939–1945 – Die Inhaber der höchsten Auszeichnung des Zweiten Weltkrieges aller Wehrmachtsteile [The Bearers of the Knight's Cross of the Iron Cross 1939–1945 — The Owners of the Highest Award of the Second World War of all Wehrmacht Branches]. Friedberg, Germany: Podzun-Pallas. ISBN 978-3-7909-0284-6. 
  • Kurowski, Franz (1995). Knight's Cross Holders of the U-Boat Service. Atglen, PA: Schiffer Publishing. ISBN 978-0-88740-748-2. 
  • Range, Clemens (1974). Die Ritterkreuzträger der Kriegsmarine [The Knight's Cross Bearers of the Navy]. Stuttgart, Germany: Motorbuch Verlag. ISBN 978-3-87943-355-1. 
  • Scherzer, Veit (2007) (in German). Die Ritterkreuzträger 1939–1945 Die Inhaber des Ritterkreuzes des Eisernen Kreuzes 1939 von Heer, Luftwaffe, Kriegsmarine, Waffen-SS, Volkssturm sowie mit Deutschland verbündeter Streitkräfte nach den Unterlagen des Bundesarchives [The Knight's Cross Bearers 1939–1945 The Holders of the Knight's Cross of the Iron Cross 1939 by Army, Air Force, Navy, Waffen-SS, Volkssturm and Allied Forces with Germany According to the Documents of the Federal Archives]. Jena, Germany: Scherzers Miltaer-Verlag. ISBN 978-3-938845-17-2. 

External links

Military offices
Preceded by
Korvettenkapitän Georg-Wilhelm Schulz
Commander of the 6th U-boat Flotilla
November 1942 – August 1944
Succeeded by
Preceded by
Kapitän zur See Bruno Mahn
Commander of the 31st U-boat Flotilla
April – May 1945
Succeeded by

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